Reflections on a Wandering Life.....

Friday, July 13, 2012

Forest Preserve 

Rain, rain go away. Drippy day today. It's OK, though, because the last couple days were long ones. We went to a little village up in the forest preserve. Very beautiful. It was a long drive getting there, but it was well worth it. We spent the night in a village guest house and came back yesterday afternoon.

Old wooden aqueduct in the forest preserve.
After we got to the village the day before yesterday, we went to a local hotel and had dinner. After dinner, we were walking through the beautiful forest village when a friendly villager stopped us and insisted that we sit and talk with him for awhile. He spoke the local dialect, so it was very hard for me to follow, but I was interested in what he had to say, because he has spent his entire life in that little romote village in the forest. He was quite an interesting guy.

While we were talking with him, a local representative of the PSB stopped and asked for my passport. I was taken aback a bit, because this guy was not in uniform. I was not too sure whether I should give it to him. But he pulled out his smart phone and showed me his ebadge, so I relented, because the only thing they want to see anyway is the front page and the visa page. He used his smart phone to photograph those two and then took his leave. In the summer of 2009 I was up on the Tibetan Plateau and I was hiking up in the canyon early in the morning. I came around a bend and there right in front of me was a high school kid dressed in a three piece suit. He looked so out of place it was hard not to laugh. He flashed a great big smile and said, "Welcome to China! I need your passport." That's when I noticed the PSB officer standing behind him with a clipboard. I gave him my passport, he handed it to the cop, the cop wrote down the numbers and gave it back. Simple. But it would have been a long day if I hadn't had it with me.

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